DIY mercury glass effect using mirrored spray paint

In this post, I share how to get a DIY mercury effect on glasses by using Rust-oleum mirror effect spray paint. Let me share how I turned some cheap drinking glasses into expensive-looking vases. 

Some of you might be already familiar with mercury glass. Did you, like me, have mercury glass baubles on your Christmas tree as a kid? Mercury glass ( or silvered glass) was also known as poor man’s silver as it was an inexpensive alternative to the silver used to decorate wealthy homes back in the 1800s.

I love the vintage look of the mercury effect on glass. It is like an antique aged look, which slots in perfectly with the style of decor I love. You can style DIY mercury glass pieces in both a luxe decor space and a Cottageocre space, as they’re versatile.

What is Mercury Glass? 

Back in the day, it was known as “Poor man’s silver”, It was a glass that was blown double walled, then silvered between the layers with a liquid silvering solution, and sealed. ( Source Wikipedia ). I had to google what it actually was. Online, I had seen vases and tableware with this effect but I actually never knew what it was. I like it because it has an aged look to it and looks antique. 

If you want to buy Mercury glass now it can be expensive, but, for the cost of a can of mirror spray paint, some Vinegar and water and some glasses I will show you how to get this look for less than €20. 

How to get this antique looking effect

What you will need

Mirror effect spray paint

A spray bottle 

Water and Vinegar


Glass items to decorate

The steps to achieving this mercury glass effect

  1. The first thing to do is clean your glass, you will not need to prime the glass to get this effect. 
  2. Then, get your empty spray bottle and add a 50/50 mixture of water and Vinegar. 
  3. Mist your glass lightly with the water and vinegar mix. ( I sprayed the outside of the glass but the tutorials I watched people sprayed the inside. As it was my first attempt I went for the easy option and prayed the outside of the glass).
  4. Then apply one coat of mirror spray paint. 
  5. Using a tissue dab the water spots on the glass, be careful not to rub the paint and use light dabbing strokes. 

Repeat Steps 3,4,5 for two more times to get your desired effect. You can have a look at my Youtube video also to see how I did it. Once you are happy with your piece let it fully dry and cure. Then you can add some pretty flowers to your new vases. 

What glasses can I use?

I picked up normal drinking glasses from Dunnes Stores for my DIY, they were only €2-€3. You can use some old glasses in your home or even give an old vase a new lease of life. These are really popular for weddings and I have seen people using these in their table settings. 

Also, why not use an old alcohol bottle and recycle it, once the glass is clear, you should be able to achieve this effect.

I picked up some pink roses and Gypsohelea from my local Supermarket. I love the contrast between pink and silver. Get creative and add your fave flowers to your new vases. 

Let me know if you make some DIY mercury effect glass. Don’t forget to tag me in your Instagram pics so I can have a peep at your DIY’s and get inspired. I tried to explain the how-to process as best I could but do have a look at my Youtube video to get a better idea. 

Thanks for reading, Chat soon, Catherine. 



  1. Kris
    September 6, 2017 / 6:23 am

    Wow, this is such a pretty & creative diy idea! Loving it, I need to try it at home!Have an awesome day!xx Kris

  2. Catherine Carton
    September 7, 2017 / 6:05 am

    Thanks so much for popping by and reading it! Same to you x

  3. Caroline Jackson
    February 10, 2018 / 10:32 am

    This an excellent combination for airbrush makeup kit, I had to visit the home improvement store to find a rubber washer/gasket so the device perform. It comes with exactly what seems a like a white mp3 that will assist with the issue but it shreds apart once the filter is actually threaded onto the pump.

  4. Tammie Jennings
    August 11, 2019 / 5:44 pm


    I just found your site and this idea! I am looking to turn 16×16 pieces of glass into mirrored tops for my night stands and think this idea of faux mercury glass will look great. Going to give it a try and will definitely post pictures of before and after. Thank you for sharing this great technique and idea! Wish me luck!

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